tv Hardball With Chris Matthews MSNBC September 9, 2010 5:00pm-6:00pm EDT
bob, a pleasure. that will do it for us. i am dylan ratigan. up next is "hardball." chris matthews teeing things up right here. right now on msnbc. the firestarter. let's play "hardball." . good evening. i'm chris matthews in washington. leading off, who will stop the fire? what can the president do to stop the minister, the pastor in florida from burning korans on worldwide television? how do you stop the wildfire this could ignite globally? prime minister of iraq says there must been an intervention that the burning of the muslim religious book will cause damage between the east and west. what are they doing in the white house? aren't there ways to reach this pastor and florida and stop the
recruitment bonanza. moments ago the pastor said he's calling the whole thing off. we have to find out the facts. plus, they're hitting the polls. what will republicans do if they take control of the government? the u.s. congress. here's what they're talking about doing, killing obama health care. canceling what is left of the stimulus, and using subpoena power to investigate the white house. one gop lobbyist states that the goal would be to make it a one-term presidency. the leader of the campaign against president obama would be the new speaker, if he took office, john boehner. the president went directly after him yesterday. we're going to ask the "hardball" strategists if it's good politics for the president to make boehner the name and face of the republican party. do enough people know who this guy is? l. also, remember this moment from arizona governor jan brewer's debate last week? we don't quite have that. tonight -- there was actually a
brain freeze in the debate. tonight we talk to the democrat who hopes to unseat brewer. terry goddard. and let's start with whether president obama needs to get involved and stop the pastor from what he's up to in florida. donna is the host of the last word which will debut later this week on msnbc. -- the cohost of the rundown on msnbc. i want to give you facts i have. i've interviewed the minister down there, terry jones. i've interviewed his colleague. never in all the conversations did they link their burning the koran on national television to honor 9/11 with anything to do with the mosque a couple blocks away from 9/11, from the world trade center at ground zero. no discussion as to that would be a negotiating point. i asked the minister, terry jones, is there anyone who could
ask you not to do this. he said, no, he's going to go ahead. all the sudden we've come up with a linkage here. maybe courtesy of the right-wing politicians in the count who have done a delightful job of linking the two things neatly for the handy work of terry jones who can now say i'm stopping the burning of the books because i have a commitment now from the imam in new york, whether it's true or not, to stop the construction of the mosque. your thoughts, lawrence and then saec savanna. >> that's an attempt to turn it into a blackmail exchange. take an ugly story and make it uglier. who knows what this guy is really going to do. it has the feeling of watching somebody on top of a building, deciding is he going to jump? is he not going to jump in it looks like he's backing off now after his visit from the fbi today. and whatever else is coming down on him. but i think the big question for the white house is, what are you
going to do on the next one of these? they were clearly not prepared to deal with this thing. this is going to happen again. what's the white house strategic reaction to this happening again? is it good for general petraeus to raise the visibility of this thing? is it good for hillary clinton to raise the visibility of this thing, and the president? and, chris, i don't know the answer. i think this is a difficult call. they have to figure out what is their strategy on handling these kinds of situations. >> savanna, what tools were available to the president under the law? it seems to me you're allowed to have an awful lot of free speech in the country, thank god. but you're also limited. you can't yell fire in a theater. you can't incite media violence. we have a warning from general petraeus about this. we've heard from maliki about this, it's going to cause violence. how much more evidence does the law need to hear that an act
will incite violence? >> those the arguments the government would make should it be seeking to stop the burning of the koer ran. there's no evidence the government is, in fact, trying to do that. you make the arguments. but as you pointed out, chris, you have to show that the burning of the koran was likely to insight immediate harm. it can't be something that seems speculative in nature. in the government sought to ban this speech, the arguments you lay out would be the ones they would make. the supreme court case directly on point back in 2003 on the issue of cross burning. >> let's go. >> the court found there you can burn a cross -- but if there's an attempt to intimidate. >> okay. we have tape now. here is the minister himself talkin
talking. >> -- if during this announcement i get a little bit emotional. this has been for us a very, very difficult and trying time. we have been in thoughts and prayers all over this period. a lot of times we were asked what would it take to call this thing off. we have thought it over many times. we felt very convinced that we should do this. we thought about what would have to happen for us to call this off. as we prayed about that in the past, we did have one idea, that if this thought we put out to god, if he would want us to call this off if we have accomplished our goal, then our thought was
the american people do not as a whole want the mosque at the ground zero location. that if they were willing to either cancel or move the mosque at the ground zero location, or if they were willing to move that location if they were able to move it away from the location, we would consider that a sign from god. we have, or he has been in contact with the imam in new york city. i, with the imam here, i will be flying up there on saturday.
to meet with the imam at the ground zero mosque. he has agreed to move the location. that, of course, cannot happen overnight. but he has agreed to move that. we felt that would be a sign that god would want us to do it. the american people do not want the mosque there. muslims do not want us to burn the koran. the obama has agreed to move the mosque, we have agreed to cancel our event on saturday. and on saturday i will fly up there to meet with him. >> i just don't know what to make of this fellow. with all the conversation we've had in the past couple weeks now, anyone in the media is covered.
is this guy taking advantage of anything he can? it's up to everyone's religion what god says. that's a message from god. that he shouldn't do something. interesting way of seeking a recession, i would say. your thoughts. >> well, it's interesting. i don't know that it started this way. but it's ended this way, as you say, totally linked with the mosque. the pastor contending that he's now talked to this imam in new york city and they've essentially made some kind of deal, some kind of trade. i can also tell you there were reports that secretary gates was going to call this pas this afternoon and implore him not to go forward with his demonstration. i'm trying to firm up if that call did occur. i suppose if you make any connection, it is an example of
a couple different acts that some people find offensive, then the federal government can't do anything about it. you have people who find it terribly ochbtive. >> i know two people connected. boehner and palin. they hadn't been drawned by this pastor or his colleague, the pastor on the program the other night. never came up in their minds, but today id did come up. this was established publicly in the media. he's grabbed onto it. he has his lifeboat and heard from the lord. i've been watching the tapes down there. the there's some truther nut running behind them with a big sign. so it is a real jamboree.
his claim it was done by washington. they are their wires crossed as to who the bad guys are. >> that's the controlled demolition school of thought on what happened on 9/11 that he's attracting there. there suspect a reason to believe a single world he said. do we really believe that we just heard the new york islamic community center is going to be moved? he may think he made that deal. he seems to imagine all sorts of things. but there's no evidence indicating that center would be moved in a situation like this or was going to be move d now we'll sit here and wait. there's going to be a statement from the islamic center in new york, saying, no, we're not
moving. that should be coming out, i don't know, within the next few minutes. or shock us all and say that's the deal. we're suddenly moving because a crazy man in florida has convinced us moving it is a good idea. when no once else could. >> as for the buildup by the white house. they're trying to deal through the powers of our limited government. they ought to be reminded of how limited it is. they cannot stop bp from doing what it's doing. it cannot stop hamas. there's not a lot of power in the hands of the federal government. what was gibbs up to today? what was axelrod doing? >> i think it started with general petraeus and went through hillary clinton, the president himself, gibbs,
axelrod. it's kind of performing a shaming functioning. trying to pressure this pastor. as you point out, the federal government doesn't have the power to stop this free speech. so what's left but persuasion? there was an expectation would be calling the bluff. saying you said you wouldn't do it if you were asked. all right. we'll ask. that was the only tool left to the administration, to try to convince the pastor not to do it. it's a slippery slope. any person who wants to threaten to burn a koran things they can get the president on the phone or the secretary of defense or the secretary of state or anybody, you really opened the flood gate. it's not something this administration would do lightly. >> today i thought the guy was
going to get the president on the phone. i think the president was not smart enough to make the mistake of getting on the phone with this guy, he would begin exact demands. then the story would be the president could stop the burning if he met the following demands. it's his fault. he would have found himself an accomplice. the white house was smart not getting on the phone with this customer. stay with us. we're going to know in a few minutes if reality bites. we'll be back with a pastor. he's not beginning to burn it. he's going to new york. he has a ticket to new york. he's going up with his imam trying to talk to the other imam who he says has agreed to move the mosque. time to face the pollen that used to make me sneeze... my eyes water. but now zyrtec®, the fastest 24-hour allergy relief, comes in a liquid gel. zyrtec® liquid gels work fast, so i can love the air®. oh! just come snuggle with mama. [ male announcer ] missing something?
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27,000. economists were predicting a much smaller drop of $2,000. also the trade deficit narrowed significantly this month as american exports rose to the highest level in nearly two years. americans made airplanes and other manufacturing goods led the exports. imports declined. taken together, the headlines helped ease fears the economy would slip into a second recession and could bolster democratic hopes in the midterms. "hardball" back in a minute. it has antioxidants to help support your immunity and nutrients like vitamin d for your colon. centrum ultra men's. [ technician ] are you busy? management just sent over these new technical manuals. they need you to translate them into portuguese. by tomorrow.
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the imam has agreed to move the mosque. we have agreed to cancel our event on saturday. and on saturday, i will be flying up there to meet with him. >> we're back. that was the pastor terry jones down in florida saying he's got -- he's called off the burning of the koer ran because the mosque will not be built.
he says a deal has been struck with the imam up in new york to move the proposed mosque. roiters in direct conflict to what the pastor said on the air is reporting sources close to the imam say there's no deal. we're also joined now by the "washington post's" eugene robinson. i'm deadly serious about how news develops here. this guy, if you listen to him closely, i don't want to speak disrespectively o of a man in the cloth. there was a murkiness in what he said. it's going to be difficult to move the location. he may well have gotten the word from the imam some perhaps dissembling. i'll be glad do meet with you on saturday. i'm glad you're open hearted about this. we're going to talk. and now we're getting word that there's no deal.
it sounds like there isn't. >> well, reuters is a credible news source. and the pastor, frankly, is not a credible news source. >> i'm just getting through my year, through the magic of television, nbc, my network, and reuters saying no deal. >> he has a checkered past. he spent all the years in germany handing out flock over there. in which he was -- he seemed to have been more of a cult leader than a minister, as you and i would think of him. he's not the most credible news source here. >> he's found ha local imam to back up his story. how do we put all this together? >> if you notice during his press conference, he said i didn't speak to the imam. he pointed to somebody off
camera. so he was d there will probably be some meeting in new york. they may hash out some soft something. but the idea the imam over the phone committed to this guy is a pretty incredible one. >> lawrence, this seems like a feeble local attempt at shuttle diplomacy. you have one imam talking to another imam saying we're going to talk, but it may be difficult to move, but they've agreed to do it. it sounds like it's one of the things where different people are saying different things to different people. but nbc is reporting at this moment as is reuters news service, there is no deal to move the mosque. >> chris, i've never had a "hardball" prediction come through so fast. as soon as i heard what this guy said, i mean, i didn't believe a word of it. then, it would be disproven within minutes by reporters making phone calls. of course there's no deal.
i mean, you know the piece wrote in "the new york times" made it clear it wasn't going to be moved, and the notion that the single most ridiculous person to enter this dialogue would suddenly be the one who got this thing to move, who got the previously impossible thing to happen, it's absurd. the guy wanted to get out of this. he desperately came up with words to get out of doing it on 9/11. now that we're showing there's absolutely no deal. everything he just said is untrue. maybe it's back on. there was no deal. no one should have thought there was a deal based on anything he
said. >> savannah, those watching this story and listening on the radio have heard the white house is trying to find a way to stop this. the minister felt pressure from the outside. he's not going to tell us what it is. do you know what the role is from the fbi or any of the federal officials? >> the fbi put out an alert. alerts about danger if this were to go forward. the state department issue ad travel aletter. the concern is real. it's not hypothetical. we all know what happened in denmark with the cartoon depicting muhammad. there's a real concern here. and i think the government, the state department here at the white house, they've been struggling with what they can do, but not wanting to set a
precedent where everybody who has an ax to grind, everybody willing to do a publicity stunt somehow gets an audience either directly with the president or even just gets the president's attention. so it's been a very difficult situation for this administration. as i said, there was an expectation that robert gates from the defense department would be calling the pastor and asking him not to go forward with those protests. dp that call happened. we haven't been able to firm that up yet. we just showed the tape with the pastor. he certainly didn't mention that as the reason for calling off this protest. we live in an on lean world. we're in the same swimming pool. if someone threatens to throw a rat or snake in, we're all paying attention. somebody is standing by this global pool and saying i'm going to throw this thing in and everybody is going to feel it. >> he's breaking all the rules.
the way a crazy person becomes famous is to do something nutsing on youtube. then everybody towards it around, then it winds up on cable. this guy shot up there. i guess what he was saying was so nuts. look at this guy. he thinks he's john brown. >> this is just not some stupid guy. this is an intelligent manipulative guy. you should read about his time in germany where he was -- he has a streak. i think he knows what he's doing. >> there goes the truth. that puts the right taste on this. >> what i want to say is boehner provided the linkage today.
they were happy to give this guy his handy work. which was there's a connection. we have him on tape, if anybody questions this. long interviews with him and his partner down there, no mention of the mosque. all about -- i asked, who do you respect? george w. if george w. told you not to do it, would you do it? i would still do it. now they found their life preserver thrown to them by the people on the right. your thoughts, ryan? >> it really shows how easy it is to manipulate the media. everybody wants to jump in there. we have the actor who is are news makers,like sarah palin and john boehner willing to go along with this. >> lawrence, last thought here. what public good did boehner or palin do by linking the mosque with this absurdity? the attempt to ruin everything in the world by saying yeah,
we're over there feeding you guys, trying to getton an electric zbrid, trying to get you the hospital, taking care of the wounded, by the way. we hate your god. we're going to burn the bible on world television. we'll give you just what the enemy wants. this could have been bin laden's favorite weekend. second favorite. >> it seems like boehner and palin painted the imaginary route out of this situation for this guy. he heard him say that. okay. now that's my position. he in his imagination has cheafed that. i think what you saw in his press statement was a road map laid out by john boehner and sarah palin. >> we have the cultural world all together hire now.
thank you, eugene robinson. we were trying to get ariana on tonight. she's so busy. lawrence o'donnell and savannah guthr guthrie. stay with us. we'll have much more on this decision by pastor terry jones to cancel his koran burning under the premise they're getting the mosque to move. that's not what we're reporting. the mosque is not moving. but pastor terry jones is going to new york this saturday to preside over it not moving, apparently. you're watching "hardball" only on msnbc. i have diabetes. i didn't miss a premium payment for 10 years. and i'm worried if i lose my job, i won't be able to afford insurance. when i graduated from college, i lost my health insurance. the minute i got sick, i lost my insurance. not anymore. not anymore. not anymore. america's healthcare reforms change lives for the better. to find out how it can help you, visit us at americasfairhealthcare.org it's not just fair, it's the law. look at all this stuff for coffee. oh there's tons. french presses, expresso tampers, filters.
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to burn copies of the koran this coming saturday to commemorate 9/11, saying he's struck a deal with the builders of the mosque two blocks from ground zero in new york, saying the deal has been struck. he's going up on saturday to ratify it. that deal has not been struck according to reuters and nbc. there is no deal. sources all around the imam in new york say this is totally untrue. so we'll find out if this man will go back to his plan to burn the koran or several korans or if he'll get the truthed pushed out by the media. we're going to find out what is going on here. you'll notice the truthers were wondering behind the reverend down there, the most extreme viewers, by the way, who believe that the american government blew up the buildings on 9/11. there they are. the controlled demolition theory. we've dealt with them before. we'll be back with more "hardball" in the middle of this rumble over the facts.
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stocks extending wednesday. the dow adding 28 points. the s&p 500 tacking on five. the nasdaq climbing by seven. stocked started off strong with new jobless claims last week. that's three weeks in a row of better than expected numbers. but banks of all shapes and size were in the spotlight starting around midnight. those shares tumbling. but a number of smaller banks surged after a key analyst published a possible big takeover. mcdonald's shares skidded on softer sales numbers out of europe. but adobe shares jumped more than 12% after apple said
developers could stand using the flash software to build new apps for the iphone. that's it from cnbc. we are first in business worldwide. now it is back to hardball. democratic strategist steve mcmahon joins us now with republican strategist leslie -- >> i think people like boehner and sarah pale reason the first people in the news cycle to put out the with word there's some linkage between burning the koran on international television and the mosque a couple blocks away from the world trade centers. now this minister discovered this is handy. i'll trade one for the other. it turns out the trade wasn't real. but at least he's pretending. your thoughts? about accomplices -- accessories before and after the fact here. >> i think that's a stretch. >> why sh that a stretch? have you heard the ministers
talk about a link with the mosque before mr. boehner or sarah palin mentioned it? >> i don't read about the mosque. you have 50 people in a garage who say crazy things and all the sudden we have everybody responding to them. look at them for who it is. >> is sarah palin one of the 50 people in the mosque. >> sarah palin is brought up again. she puts out a tweet, she starts talking about it, eneverybody wants to say -- >> they have the right to burn a koran if they want to, but doing so is insensitive. i would say it's more than insensitive. that's pretty soft language compared to the way she talked about the mosque. >> not judging her. >> it's insensitive! >> why pick out sarah palin? >> because i'm looking at the news that came in this morning. all the sudden she's getting her fingers into this thing. your thoughts, steve. i think it's incredible she would take such a soft line on this guy burning the koran. you never attack to the right when you're on the right. that's what is going on here.
>> for what political purpose? >> friendship as far out with the fringe as she can. because that's her base. >> that's right. it's not just her base, it's the people taking over the party. it's the glenn beck, rush limbaugh. >> you can't hurt by being friendly with the right. >> you cannot be too far right. especially if you're thinking of running for president or if you want a controversial talk show on fox. you need to do these things. they generate headlines and get people like us talking. it works for sarah palin who wants to be an entertainer. i'm not sure it works well if she wants to be the president of the united states. >> do you think that's a statement you can live with leslie? people have a constitutional right to burn a koran if they want to. do you like that? >> first off, i'm not going to put sarah palin's words in my mouth. i can speak for myself. you play too much into the game that sarah palin wants you to do. talkg from a conservative republican perspective, i think we were very both bipartisanly, bipartisan perspective on how
ludicrous we thought his actions were. why can't we talk in solidarity about this? it's all a ruse of sarah palin pulling strings? >> i'll get back to my question. why did she throw him the life jacket? nobody else was doing it in the media. i wasn't drawing the connection. these characters were on the show talking to me. both these pastors. neither one of them mentioned the mosque. both long interviews. i said is there anyone who could appeal to you to stop this. nobody mentioned the mosque until today, after these stories moved. by people on the far right. not on the right. people like boehner, just a republican golfer. >> well, the tan is important. but to be fair to that point, i think a lot of people are talking about it if you want to see that's a lifeline, you'll see it regardless of anything i have to say.
>> if people continue to draw a connection and suggest that somehow the leaders of the republican party and the woman the front-runner for president, i mean, that's why this makes so much news. if there's some suggestion that the republican party is sort of behind this guy, and manipulating this guy, i think it further alienates the republican party. >> further. >> from the majority of americans who feel differently about this. >> is there a difference between the difficult question of building a mosque a couple blocks away from the world trade center, which i've always said on this program is a difficult question. i've admired michael bloomberg for the courageous side that he's taken. can we agree there's no two sides o to the argument of burning religious books on television? we just got the word that secretary gates did make a call to the reverend to smooth this thing out or end this thing. here's john boehner making the point i was trying to relate to here. conflating, a word i don't like, but it's big on the right.
conflating koran burning with the ground zero mosque. >> to pastor jones and those who want to build the mosque, just because you have a right to do something in america, does not thing it was the right thing to do. >> that was healthy. we call that in the nba, an assist. >> i mean -- >> or an alley-oop. get it near the top of the rim so the other guy can put it in. >> still, it's really hard to believe that reverend jones can come up with these ludicrous statements. the media is giving the attention to him. you can go back and say it's sarah palin by history. >> what we're seeing now is she's the front-runner. >> sarah palin has a very important role in the public party. i think if she prepares herself and chooses to go that direction, she's going to have to work harder. >> that's a condition contrary to fact. if she prepares herself.
she hasn't shown any evidence that she's preparing herself. >> she's making a lot of money. she's taking care of her family. >> do you think it would get in the way of air traffic? >> i didn't hear you. >> you said if sarah palin did her homework. if elephants can fly, would they get in the way of air traffic? what do you call it? conditional? we're watching the news tonight. live on this program. right before we go on the air. we watched the reverend terry jones along with the local imam announce they've struck a deal. within minutes we get the word from reuters and then from nbc news and local nbc in new york there's no such deal. is this media manipulation by this guy? is he just looking for a way out? has somebody got something on him? sh this guy looking for a way out? >> he's looking for a way out.
it's possible he spoke to local leaders in california. then he announced it and linked it and did everything palin and boehner suggested he should do. i'm kidding. >> it's suggested. >> just to call them up. >> it's just a coincidence. >> we'll tap the phones and find out. >> he was looking for a way out. the president of the united states made an appeal to him. >> how can we pretend that we know anything that he's going to do? >> let me tell you something about our country, which is difficult but wonderful. we live in a free kwunt. you can be a fool in the country. you can be dangerous in the country. it's difficult to stop. the president of the united states with a huge army, with huge police powers and everything is limited in his powers. it's a wonderful thing to watch. maliki can't understand it. the prime minister of iraq said today, why don't you stop this guy? he can't. there are things the president can want do. all this talk on the right that he's some kind of dictator.
there's very few things that a president can do to go after somebody he doesn't like. not like doing something he doesn't like. >> no, but -- i agree with you completely here. but he is engaging in this. he is fuelling the fire. >> how so? >> he's engaging in -- >> engaging in this communication and dialogue. nobody questions why this gentleman st demanding so much attention? we know it's foolish. >> do you think general petraeus was wrong to issue the statement that this endangers his troop? >> i think the digger issue is -- >> i think that -- >> answer that question. >> all of us have a responsibility. i do. a lot of people agree with that to -- everybody has been ratcheting this up. there's mud on everybody's boots. >> do you think petraeus was wrong to make this statement? >> no, i don't. >> he was right to say it's a danger to the troops. zl first of all, it's true.
there's every reason to believe it's true. the president of the united states was doing what we elected hip to do. he was being a leader. he was taking an unpopular position, and in this case a political position only unpopular among few on the right. >> let's see what happens in the next few hours maybe sooner when the minister down there, i have not said a word against him really, finds out there is no deal and that the public on this prams and elsewhere, nbc news is announcing, reuters is announcing, there is no deal. you were shown to be wrong. perhaps b.s.'ing us. thank you steve mcmahon. thank you, leslie sanchez. you've been very careful. back to more on pastor jones in florida who apparently canceled his koran burning on a promise that the mosque near ground zero will move. we have yet to hear any confirmation of that from new york. here's the statement from the mosque. there's been no personal
interaction or conversation betwewith terry jones. no conversations about moving the mosque at all. not even talk. "hardball" returns after this. ♪ [ male announcer ] it's a symbol of confidence... ♪ ...honor... ♪ ...and trust. an unspoken bond that, while common among men... ♪ ...is exceedingly rare among companies.
the ram 60-day handshake. ram. we're in a strange moment in the news business where terry jones saying he has a deal to stop the mosque in ground zero and he won't burn the korans. all the news out of new york is there's been in conversation between terry jones, the minister, and the people building the mosque. we have a conflict in fact now. we're going to follow it until we find out who is telling the truth. i'm betting on the fact that the news sources is accurate. there is no deal. we'll see how the reverend reacts to that news development. back in a minute with more "hardball" as we follow this story. it's investing with intelligence and cold hard conviction. e-trade. investing unleashed.
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well, i've got to try to clarify perhaps the politics of this. it is tricky. here's john boehner saying the pastor jones and those who want to build the mosque, just because you have a right to do something doesn't mean it is the right thing today. here he is tying together these two questions. sarah palin this morning saying people have a constitutional right to burn a koran if they want to, but doing so is insensitive and unnecessary provocation much like building a mosque on ground zero. two people on the right deciding to link these two issues publicly. after the reverend terri jones down in florida today just an hour or so ago said he wasn't going to go ahead because he has some kind of agreement to stop
the mosque construction, although that is challenged by the news we're getting put out this on her tweet. is it twitter or tweet? book burner stands down. good, now followers of book who want to kill innocents because some people do things you don't agree with, stand down. she's right in the middle of this thing. your thought? >> let's talk about how these things are not remotely similar. building and going to a mosque is a fundamental part of the islamic religion. it's part of it. without mosques you don't have a place to worship. burning korans is not part of the christian religion. you can be a christian and not burn korans. you cannot -- i suppose you can be a muslim without going to a mosque but a mosque is an important part of being muslim. to try to equate these two things as equally offensive is grotesque. >> in all fairness, isn't the
mosque construction two blocks from ground zero a bit murkier morley? is that a simple case of wanting to worship or wanting to worship at a particular site? >> there's already a mosque near there. there's nothing murky about this and they're objecting to mosques in tennessee and elsewhere. >> i know. but there are a lot of people who are reasonable disagree. gene, get in here. i've always said of this mosque construction, i'm with mayor bloomberg. he's been been right in terms of the position he's taken. i understand why people argue about this thing. >> i've had a hard time understanding why. i respect the fact that some people of good will feel passionately about it. i've had a hard time really understanding and intermizing that argument. i don't see -- i don't see it as offensive. i don't see it as you know, it's in the fabric of manhattan a block takes you into another city, another world. i mean, and the idea that because something is two blocks
away it's at ground zero is. >> i know that. >> it's not true. >> once it got joined it began building a mosque on 9/11. building a mosque on ground zero. >> it's just not. >> let's talk about the other issue. the issue on the table right now is right now -- we'll be right back. copd makes it hard for me to breathe. but with advm breathing. so now, i can join the fun and games with my grandchildren. great news! for people with copd, including chronic bronchitis, emphysema, or both, advair helps significantly improve lung function.
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that made the at the same time or seemed to be making a statement confirming what pastor jones said that there was an agreement not to build the mosque in exchange for him, terri jones not burning the korans on saturday was not a deal. it was simply a deal that he thinks he's got arranged for a meeting to occur between the minister there, you're looking at him right now and the imam in new york building the conference center. savannah guthrie, it seems like we're getting clarity. the florida imam says no deal has been reached to move the site of a mosque at the site of ground zero in exchange for a florida minister to call off plans to burn korans. the imam tells the associated press what he offered was a meeting among terri jones, the new york imam planning the center and himself to talk about the mosque location. so there we're getting clarity. it was not offered to us in that presser held by the minister. >> yeah, so it wasn't a quid pro quo. i think this is the exact thing you thought might have happened.
it appears that was a little bit of a misunderstanding where this pastor thought he had some kind of deal, but in fact, all he's got is a deal to have a meeting with, it sounds like this imam in new york city on saturday. and apparently on the basis of thinking that the mosque was off entirely this pastor was willing not to do the koran burning demonstration. you wonder what will happen in light of these facts if he's going to come back out and say i was wrong, therefore my demonstration goes forward. we were able to confirm that defense secretary gates did call this pastor this afternoon. i know this was a piece of tape we got of the pastor. i'd be curious to know the timing. i'm trying to figure that out. as far as what we saw, the pastor didn't mention anything about getting a call from the secretary of defense for the united states, didn't say whether or not that had influenced his thinking at all. he seemed to hang it on the notion of if they don't build a mosque, we won't burn ko